COVID-19 Business Support: Relief through Insolvency Law Changes
Based in the firm’s London office, Chris is a Corporate Restructuring Partner at Mercer & Hole. With transactional experience from M&A to restructuring and a problem solving approach, his emphasis is on practical action and advice.
Chris is frequently called upon when businesses and their management are facing unfamiliar challenges. Acting on behalf of management, creditors and other stakeholders, he has many years’ experience of advising on business sales transactions and undertaking due diligence exercises. As a champion of the constructive use of insolvency procedures, when necessary, Chris takes appointments as an administrator, liquidator or other insolvency officeholder. He has acted in many industry sectors including retail, manufacturing, printing, wholesale and distribution, leisure, professional practices, property and construction, utilities and not-for-profit.
Chris leads the firm’s international restructuring practice and, having particular knowledge and experience of European insolvency regimes, including the European Insolvency Regulation, he is one of the few UK officeholders well-positioned to bridge the gulf between understanding and expectations between stakeholders in cross-border restructurings.
Recognised for his practical approach and his skills in effecting recoveries through litigation, Chris also has regulatory experience, which has contributed to the demand for his services as an expert witness. He is a member of The Academy of Experts and he represents the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales on the Joint Insolvency Committee, which sets formal regulatory standards.
Chris is a past president, an honorary member and the treasurer of INSOL Europe, the European association of restructuring and insolvency professionals; and from 2001 to 2019 he was the editor of ‘Recovery’, the quarterly journal of the Association of Business Recovery Professionals (R3). He is also a member of the Lexis PSL Restructuring & Insolvency Consulting Editorial Board and the UK Government’s European insolvency stakeholder group, as well as the chief contributor to Mercer & Hole’s restructuring blog and a regular conference speaker and commentator. Chris is a member of the Accountancy Age Advisory Board.
Chris joined Mercer & Hole as a partner in 2004. He has been working full time in corporate finance and restructuring since 1983 when he qualified as a chartered accountant; he became a licensed insolvency practitioner in 1987.
Married with two children, Chris devotes his leisure time to his family.
Jim Luby, a past president of INSOL Europe, commented on Neil Smyth’s editorial in the current issue of Recovery “Well done Chris, one of the most dedicated professionals I know”.
Simeon Gilchrist of Edwin Coe commented on Chris’s article ‘COVID-19 Business Support: Relief through insolvency law changes’ “As lucid as ever, Chris”.
Piya Mukherjee, President of INSOL Europe commented on Chris’s presentation (as Treasurer) to the Council about the effect on the association of the pandemic ‘That was an excellent presentation of the accounts and budget. Just the right balance to reassure the Council that the hit will be taking this year is not life-threatening to IE, but also deliver the facts as they are. Thank you very much for getting this message clearly through.’
Duncan Swift, President of R3 ‘May I also extend many thanks to Chris for his sterling service’.
Paul Rippoon, Solicitor (retired) ‘Congratulations, Chris, on doing such an excellent job as editor of Recovery. Take care.’